In the digitally enabled world of the 2020s, success in business is all about having the right tools. The right digital applications can not only make your daily operations easier and more efficient, they can make it easier to analyse website user behaviour, improve conversion rates and give you a leading edge over the competition allowing you to grow your business. But in an age where the Saas market is booming, how do you know which applications are worth your time and attention? Fear not, reader, because we’ve compiled this super-comprehensive list of 22 of the must-have tools which should be in your business’ toolkit in 2020...
SEMRush delivers a suite of easy to use tools that put you and your business in the driver’s seat. Delivering solutions for onsite visibility and analytics, it’s an essential investment for brands that need to stay one step ahead of the competition. With a comprehensive suite of analytics tools you can make improvements to your content’s SEO without the need for tinkering behind the curtain. It’s also a great solution for competitor research, helping you to identify reasons why your competitors keep appearing ahead of you in SERPS so that you can level the playing field.
Unbounce Landing Page
Unbounce is a landing page platform dedicated to helping brands build compelling landing pages. These can be instrumental in reducing bounce rates and generating high-quality motivated leads. Used by some 15,000 brands, Unbounce even has a free trial so that you can see how landing pages can improve your bounce rates and lead generation without representing any financial risk whatsoever.
With over 100 templates it’s easy to build and customise your landing pages and you can even use A/B testing to see which landing pages boost conversion rates more effectively.
Calendly Appointment setting
Effective time management is essential for busy entrepreneurs who need to keep a multitude of plates spinning at all times. What’s more, if you rely on your own memory and a handful of post-it notes, it’s only a matter of time before an important appointment is missed or a vital Skype call is forgotten. And any lapses in organisation can have far reaching consequences for your business and its relationships with clients and vendors.
With Calendly, however, scheduling meetings is easy and you’ll receive automated reminders when meeting times are coming up. Just let the app know your availability preferences and it’ll do the rest for you. Correspondents pick a time and an event is created and scheduled on your calendar. It can even integrate with your email automation software for easier automation. Which brings us to…
Email marketing campaigns are an important string to any small business’ bow. Whether you’re informing clients of special offers, distributing unique voucher codes or simply maintaining brand awareness, automation is essential in a well organised email marketing campaign.
Active Campaign also has a suite of CRM functions which are perfect for small businesses for which larger CRMs like Salesforce may be redundant. As well as facilitating and automating outgoing email campaigns, users can organise customer data and increase engagement and conversion rates with sales automation tools. You can even respond to customer behaviour and make CTAs more effective with direct messaging services.
No matter what your business does and how it uses its website. Whether it facilitates e commerce or simply serves to promote brand awareness, you can benefit a great deal from learning how users interact with your website. You can identify opportunities to tweak UX, subtly influence user behaviour and improve conversion rates.
But this can be tricky using traditional analytics alone. Fortunately, Hotjar can present this information in easy to follow terms using heatmaps to give users a clearer understanding of user behaviour on their website and the factors that influence it.
Speaking of influencing the behaviour of website visitors, all businesses whether they use their sites for e commerce or not can benefit from increasing their conversion rates. A conversion doesn’t necessarily mean a sale, it can mean downloading your free ebook or signing up to your email shoots.
It’s simply the process of turning a user into either a customer or a lead. Convertflow can help with this by offering a suite of Conversion rate Optimisation (CRO) tools including onsite remarketing, which can help remind users of products that they’ve previously looked at or shopping carts that they’ve abandoned as they move around your website.
Kajabi markets itself as an all-in-one platform that provides everything your business needs. While it does a little bit of everything, there are many fields in which it truly shines. Perhaps the most glaring example is its course content management facilities.
As well as facilitating ecommerce and providing useful analytics, Kajabi allows you to create online courses easily and customise content delivery. Thus, if your business makes its money from successfully delivering online courses, or if you simply want to start using courses as a means of providing thought leadership, Kajabi is a tool that pretty much everyone will be able to find a use for.
Speaking of thought leadership, if you thought that blogs were the only means by which you can facilitate thought leadership, think again. Webinars are a great way to disseminate your knowledge, experience and expertise in a way that is engaging and interactive. Webinars can not only build value in your brand, they can be a great means of delivering training courses to your employees or drawing new members to MLM businesses.
However, in order to run and manage webinars effectively, you need a webinar management tool like WebinarJam. With a comprehensive suite of management tools and some of the industry’s most competitive pricing, if you’re doing webinars, you should be using WebinarJam.
Be honest now. How hard is your website working for you, really? Web performance can be hard to track and quantify without the right tools. And while there are many, many analytics tools out there, not many offer the combination of comprehensiveness and ease of use offered by CloudFlare.
Used by over 20 million internet properties, Cloudflare offers a unified control plane that brings security and scalability to a host of applications whether on-premises, SaaS, cloud-based or hybrid.
If you market your products or services to anyone, you probably spend a lot of time thinking and talking about marketing funnels. They’re a vital means of understanding the journey your customers go through from unqualified user to qualified lead to paying customer.
However, it can be hard for your team to visualise your funnel strategy which is where Funnel Flows come in. The application allows you to create fully customisable funnel flow charts to help visualise your funnel flow strategy for your team. Thus, you can present your ideas to your team or your clients with ease and facilitate more effective project management without the need to hire expensive designers.
Contests are a phenomenal lead capture tool that incentivises site users to convert themselves into leads for the chance to win amazing prizes. The trouble is partnering with a service that will help you create competitions that look appealing and engaging and not like spam.
Gleam is a marketing and business growth platform with a suite of features which are very appealing for small businesses. Among them is the ability to run partnered contests that can really incentivise users to convert.
Social media is no longer a novelty for small businesses. It’s a necessity for engaging with their users and communicating their brand identity to the consumers who either use them or are within their target market. In order to make your mark in a crowded market you need to be engaging consumers on the platforms that they use most often. And in many cases this means posting content across multiple platforms which can be a time consuming experience.
Hootsuite, however, can make running campaigns across multiple social platforms easy with post scheduling to ensure that your content is targeted at users when they’re most likely to see and engage with it.
Google Data Studio
When it comes to keeping an eye on your analytics and transforming them into actionable strategies, the problem is almost never not having enough data. The problem is usually not being able to interpret it in useful ways.
That’s where Google Data Studio comes in. It takes your data and transforms it into customisable reports tailored to your needs.
Don’t you just hate when your monthly reporting means pulling metrics from a range of different sources and cross-referencing them? It’s not only time consuming but an open invitation to human error.
Fortunately, Supermetrics is an all-in-one reporting platform that puts all your metrics in one place for quick and easy access. This means less time spent on reporting and more time for what matters most… analysis!
Success in business starts with a great website. One that not only looks professional but makes for superlative UI and UX and looks and handles beautifully on both desktop and mobile browsers.
Webflow is a website creation tool that makes it easy to build responsive, high-performing websites using simple drag and drop tools. In an era where the majority of your users will experience your website through a mobile device, Webflow makes responsive web design easy and intuitive.
Productivity is at the heart of profitability. And even with the most motivated workforce on the planet and the best leadership money can buy, SMEs can find themselves grappling with productivity. Fortunately, there are tools that can help you here, too!
Trello, for example is a list-making tool that makes productivity easy. With near-infinite flexibility, users can create comprehensive to-do lists, facilitate collaboration between teams and allow for easy remote project management no matter where you are.
Facebook Ad Library
Want to get a clear look at how your competitors are engaging with your shared target market? Thanks to the Facebook Ad Library, competitor research is a walk in the park.
You can get quick access to competitors’ ads simply by typing their names into the library’s search bar or clicking on their Facebook profile and then clicking on the transparency tab.
Facebook’s Ad Library isn’t the only tool that can provide comprehensive competitor research. Big Spy allows you to research competitor’s ads on a range of social platforms to provide inspiration as well as identifying opportunities to one-up your competitors.
With access to over 400 million ads from over 2 million advertisers, Big Spy can be an invaluable resource for brands that like to keep a close eye on the competition.
Want to create a distinctive new logo for your brand but don’t have the budget to hire a graphic designer who’ll charge you $5,000 for a squiggle? No problem! In this day and age, graphic design is made simple with easy to use tools like Canva.
Canva allows users to access images, vectors, graphics and fonts with a simple drag and drop interface. Make a big impression with very little effort!
If you’re running a small business, it’s more than likely that you have a blog. Your blog is a great tool for engaging with your target market while also building value in your brand. However, we all know that large slabs of text are an eyesore for readers and that images are a great way to break up the text and lend visual context to your words.
But finding good quality royalty-free images can be challenging. That’s where Unsplash comes in! With over 110,000 contributing photographers and a growing library of over 800,000 photos, Unsplash generates more than 9 billion photo impressions per month.
Video is the future of content. In an era where much of your target market will view your content through a mobile device in their sparse free time, video content is much easier to parse on the go than long form content like blog posts.
However, not everyone will be able to listen to audio while consuming your video so you need fast, accurate and affordable subtitling solutions. And for these, look no further than Zubtitle. Zubtitle allows for fast and effortless video captioning.
Many small businesses have growth on their mind. But without a proper growth management strategy facilitated by the right tools, that growth can become too unwieldy and compromise the quality people associate with your brand.
Fortunately, North Star by Growthhackers allows teams to work together to facilitate sustainable growth. You can track growth experiments, increase learning velocity, focus the team on higher impact opportunities and implement a growth culture quickly and effectively.